Outrageous: A Tackle Football League for Young Girls
Donna O’Donnell Figurski
There is growing public concern, backed by scientific evidence, about the violence of football and the possibility of a life-altering brain injury, especially in children. Former professional players have spoken out about the risks inherent to the game of football. Evidence now exists that a concussion can be dangerous (1, 2), especially to the developing brain of a young player. Even the repetitive sub-concussive hits can be harmful. Legendary quarterback Joe Namath, who had a recent scare with his cognitive functioning, said that if he knew then what is known now, he wouldn’t have played. A talented rookie linebacker on the San Francisco 49ers has quit the game after one season, saying “…I don’t want to have any neurological diseases or die younger than I would otherwise.”
Utah organizers are excited to establish the first tackle football league for girls. A video of a nine-year-old girl, Sam Gordon – now twelve, playing tackle football in a boys’ league confirms that she is talented and shows what many of us have always believed – that girls can be as skilled as boys. The Utah Girls Tackle Football League has teams of fifth- and sixth-grade girls. To enhance its visibility, the league advertises Sam Gordon as a marquee player.
This is dangerous and a step in the wrong direction. At a time when some adults are calling for the abolishment of children’s football leagues, Utah has established a tackle football league for girls. It’s one thing when players are old enough to understand the risks and decide to play, but it’s another thing when children trust that their parents will protect them. I’m sure that every parent who allows a child to play football is well-meaning, but those parents are likely to be unaware of the risks. We have a lot of work to do to spread awareness about football’s risk of brain injury.
There is no doubt that the games in this new league will be exciting. But, how many girls will have their lives dramatically changed by a brain injury?
So, Whaddya Think?
Let’s get a dialogue going. Post your comments in the Comment Section. Directions are below.
So . . . what do you think? Is there something you are passionate about in this Brain Injury (BI) world? Do you want to be heard? Your opinion matters! You can SPEAK OUT! on “So Whaddya Think?”
Simply send me your opinion, and I will format it for publication. Posts may be short, but please send no more than 500 words. Send to Neelyf@aol.com
I hope to HEAR from you soon.
As I say after each post:
Feel free to leave a comment by clicking the blue words “Leave a Comment” below this post.
If you like my blog, click the “Like” button under this post.
If you REALLY like my blog, share it with your friends. It’s easy! Click the “Share” buttons below.
If you don’t like my blog, “Share” it with your enemies. That works for me too!
(Clip Art compliments of Bing.)